Be Whoever You Want…But don’t be a boy

In Today’s society, children are encouraged to do things that makes them happy and be whoever they want to be. In this article, a young girl is removed for school because she acts too much like a boy. The physical appearcne of this young girl also plays a role in how people at the Christian school precieve her. Children should be given a chance to explore and play with their appearances.

The school should not have the right to force her to follow the biblical standards. It goes to show the difference between a Christian school and a public school. The public schools now have to follow Title IX, and giving equal education. However, what rule keeps private institutions from discriminating. Is this fair?

Here is the news story video:




Giving a new definition of “Baby Fat”

How many times have you seen in popular magazines, television, and media, countless celebrities claiming to have “gotten their body back” after having a baby? This idea of being the “perfect mother” sets unattainable expectations for everyday mothers- shifting priorities of being pleasing towards society and your significant other rather than soft and nurturing to your newborn child.

After problems with recovering from her own pregnancy, photographer Ashlee Wells Jackson created the “Fourth Trimester Project”– a series of photographs that show the true beauty of mothers after their pregnancies. The plump, skinny, wrinkled and smooth mothers of all nationalities and origins embrace their body’s changes which are suited best for their families, not for society.

“We live in a society obsessed with perfection. The goal of this project is to shift that focus to the beauty of who we really are.” – Ashlee Wells Jackson


Disney Plus Size Princess Petition

Jewel Moore, a junior right here in Farmville, VA has made international news with her petition on for Disney to include a plus-sized princess. In just under 3 weeks, Jewel’s petition has amassed over 25,000 signatures and national and international news coverage.

In part, Jewel’s petition reads:

I made this petition because I’m a plus-size young woman, and I know many plus-size girls and women who struggle with confidence and need a positive plus-size character in the media.

Studies show that a child’s confidence correlates greatly with how much representation they have in the media. It’s extremely difficult to find a positive representation of plus-size females in the media. If Disney could make a plus-size female protagonist who was as bright, amazing, and memorable as their others, it would do a world of good for those plus-size girls out there who are bombarded with images that make them feel ugly for not fitting the skinny standard.

The Huffington Post reports that Jewel is correct in her assessment of how girls engage in unhealthy eating behaviors.

The reaction to this petition also demonstrates social learning theory – how positive and negative reinforcement from others influences gendered norms (in this case, the importance of and type of ideal appearance for women).  For negative reaction, check out hostile comments made about Jewel in response to her petition and even broadcast on national news.  However, Jewel has also received a great deal of support in her quest for more realistic and a variety of body types to be represented in children’s media – my favorite is this great video created by an artist of his work to create a princess in Jewel’s image!



We Just Can’t Get it Right.

The physical appearance for women is a harsh one. It is difficult for some women to be happy with their body because of the scrutinizing that the media causes for women in society today. Many times in order for women to feel a since of self-worth, they have to look perfect.

The article pasted here is one that has been circling the internet.

Biggest Loser, Rachel Fredrickson won this past season of the competition after losing close to 60% of her body fat. She is now being called to thin. So first she was over weight and now she is too thin. As a women, we cannot win. We are scrutinized for being to fat and too thin. So the question is…Can we ever win in the eyes of society?

Asia’s ideal beauty: Looking Caucasian

This is a real-world example of intersectionality that describes how ethnicity and gendered norms interact in women’s lives.

From the article: “The majority of facial cosmetic operations performed on Asians are considered “Westernizing” procedures. Two of the most popular, nose jobs (rhinoplasty) and eyelid lifts (blepharoplasty), are specially designed to make these features look more Caucasian.”

Interestingly, often it is the parents of who encourage younger women to undergo these procedures.

‘Normal’ Barbie By Nickolay Lamm Shows Us What Mattel Dolls Might Look Like If Based On Actual Women

Here’s an example of what Barbie would look like if she reflected average measurements.  The creator of these photos asks, “If there’s even a small chance of Barbie in its present form negatively influencing girls, and if Barbie looks good as an average-sized woman in America, what’s stopping Mattel from making one?”

The article draws from a blog published by artist Nickolay Lamm – another example of an “everyday” person bringing national attention to a gender-related issue via social media.

Porn Stars are normal people too!

This article featured on the Huffington post, takes many girls that are involved with pornography and completely strips (no pun intended) off their make-up so viewers can see that they too have imperfections. I think it is really important for both men and women to realize that no one can achieve “the perfect look” everyone has imperfections!